Home-Sweet-Home Buffalo Chili

By BoulderGalinTokyo
February 2, 2012

Author Notes: We've been eating buffalo for many years, so we're reminded how special it is when I serve Buffalo Chili to my daughter's college friends for the first time.
Buffalo is a very lean meat with a distinctive taste. You could substitute a buffalo steak cut into 1/2-inch cubes and cook longer, but the steak will cost a 'pretty penny'.
The black pepper, white pepper, and the red pepper will stimulate different taste buds, so be sure to taste-test before adding more jalapenos or hot sauce.

Serves: around 8


The Roux

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons coarse black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons white pepper
  • 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper (cayenne or Thai)

The Chili

  • 2 cups onion, large dice
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup garlic stems
  • 1 (or 2) jalapeno pepper
  • 2 pounds ground buffalo
  • 28- ounces can fire-roasted tomatoes, undrained (Meir Glen my favorite)
  • 12 ounces dark beer
  • 15 ounces can black beans, drained, rinsed
  • 2 squares baking chocolate (or Van Houten cocoa)
  • salt, to taste
  • tortillas or na'an


  1. Heat oil in a large cooking pot with a heavy bottom over medium heat. Add flour and stir until the roux is a light caramel color. Lower heat, add spices and stir for 1 minute.
  2. Add onion and saute 7 minutes. Add garlic, garlic stems, and peppers, and cook for 3 minutes.
  3. Add buffalo meat, raise to medium heat and cook until pink is gone. Add tomatoes and beer, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 1 hour.
  4. Stir in beans and chocolate, stirring to melt. Add salt to taste. Cook, covered, for 15 minutes.
  5. Serve with tortillas. My hearty-appitite son likes to eat it with na'an.
  6. Leave out the beans, vegetarian still great chili. Goes great with toppings: sour cream, cheddar cheese, diced avocado, sliced green onions, or crunchy stuff like corn chips!
  7. Go Buffalos!

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Reviews (2) Questions (0)


Author Comment
BoulderGalinTokyo May 18, 2014
Cindy, I'm so glad you liked it! Both coffee, beer and chocolate add that nice earthiness (umami) to the chili. Lately I add shiitake mushrooms to everything, chili included. Oh, I really miss buffalo meat.
Cindy F. May 11, 2014
Andy, I made this recently, but added some strong old coffee from earlier in the day. (It was also used in a recepie from the fort resturant in Golden). It came out wonderful. I like the chocolate in it.